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DERRY, N.H. – On her first trip back to New Hampshire in a year and a half, Nikki Haley was laser focused.
“Let me tell you why I’m endorsing Matt Mowers, the former two-term South Carolina governor who served as U.S. ambassador to the United Nations during the Trump administration told the crowd of Republican leaders, officials, and activists packed into Fody’s Tavern in Derry, New Hampshire.
“I just don’t want someone who can win. I want someone who when they win, they’re going to prove they deserve to be there. Because when Republicans win in 2022, we have to prove to America that Republicans deserve to be there by getting things done,” Haley emphasized.
And Haley noted that Mowers – a former campaign operative who worked onTrump’s 2016 general election campaign and later served in the State Department during the former president’s first two years in office – “knows the bureaucracy in DC because he had to work in it. He knows how to fight it. He knows how to cut through it…there’s not going to be learning curve for Matt Mowers.”
Mowers is one of the top contenders in the crowded and competitive GOP primary field in New Hampshire’s 1st Congressional District, a longtime premiere House swing district that the GOP’s aiming to flip from blue to red in November’s midterm elections.
The stop in New Hampshire – which was first reported by Fox News last month – is Haley’s first since October 2020, when she campaigned with Mowers during his first bid for the seat. Mowers won the GOP nomination but lost the general election to Democratic Rep. Chris Pappas by five points. Republicans view the two-term Pappas as vulnerable as the Democratic incumbent runs for reelection.
Asked by Fox News how Haley’s visit would boost his campaign, Mowers pointed to her star power.
“You see the energy out here today to see Ambassador Haley to support our campaign. And the fact that we’re galvanizing people and drawing attention off these events is really a testament to a lot of the star power she’s lending our campaign,” Mowers said.
Haley later on Tuesday helped Mowers raise campaign cash at fundraiser for Mowers in Salem, New Hampshire. On Tuesday morning she’s scheduled to headline a fundraiser for Republicans in the Granite State’s legislature.
The former governor and ambassador has endorsed over 30 Republicans this cycle through the political wing of Stand for America, her public advocacy group.
The Republican primary in New Hampshire’s is one of many crowded and contentious GOP showdowns across the country this year in races for the House and Senate and governor. But Haley argued that “the party’s together on border security. The party’s together on inflation. The party’s together on the fact that we need to have our kids in school. The party’s together on fact that crime has to come down and that we have to support our law enforcement… the party comes together on the things that matter.”
Besides being a crucial general election battleground state, New Hampshire for a century’s held the first presidential primary in the race for the White House. And the trip by Haley, whom pundits considered a potential 2024 GOP presidential hopeful, will spark more speculation about her possible national ambitions.
Asked about 2024, Haley told Fox News “if we don’t win in 2022 there will be no ’24. That’s why we’re going around the country trying to make sure we do that.”
As for her timetable, Haley said “I don’t have to make a decision until the first of next year. But I can tell you I’ve never lost a race. I’m not going to start now. I’ll put a thousand percent into it and finish it. .. I’m going to fight for this country until my last breath, because I believe in her and I believe that we all have to be part of the solution.”
Fox News’ Paul Celeste contributed to this story